UF-Led Study Explores Differences in COVID-19 Severity Internationally (UF Health Newsroom)

UF-Led Study Explores Differences in COVID-19 Severity Internationally

The question kept coming up: Why are some countries in the grip of COVID-19 while others appear less affected?

“It’s fundamentally curious,” said Rhoel Dinglasan, Ph.D., M.P.H., a professor of infectious diseases with the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, part of UF Health, the university’s academic health center. “It seems like COVID-19 is not affecting people in Africa as severely as it has in North America. But why?”

Dinglasan suspects the answer is connected to people’s exposure to various infectious diseases in specific geographic regions.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently awarded a $10 million grant to a team led by Dinglasan to test this hypothesis and explore other factors that can influence COVID-19 severity. Other investigators from UF include John Lednicky, Ph.D., a professor in the College of Public Health and Health Professions; Piyush Jain, Ph.D., an assistant professor of chemical engineering in the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering; and Sadie Ryan, Ph.D., an associate professor of medical geography in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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